Mark Fewer - Artistic Director (Biography)
Paul Eichhorn - Festival Manager - Paul has over two decades of experience in the arts and culture not-for-profit sector as well as an extensive background in event management, marketing and promotions, and fundraising. The Owen Sound resident in recent years has provided his expertise to the Billy Bishop Home & Museum as well as the City of Owen Sound as Project Coordinator of the successful Tall Ships Owen Sound event. He has sat on numerous arts and culture committees and is an award-winning documentary filmmaker. Paul has also has written for several publications including The Toronto Star , The Globe and Mail, and Waterloo Region Record. Recently, he hosted and co-produced programs on Rogers TV focusing on history and politics.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Colleen Purdon, Chair - Colleen has worked for over 35 years as a therapist, researcher, consultant and administrator to further equality, opportunities and safety for rural women and their children She studied music at Queen’s University and completed a diploma in Music Therapy at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London England. She is the Coordinator of the Violence Prevention Grey Bruce (1997 – present), and works with the Building a Bigger Wave provincial network to coordinate violence against women strategies across the province. Colleen was a city councillor in Owen Sound from 2011 to 2014. Colleen has been a member of the Board, as Vice-Chair, since our last AGM in 2015. Her leadership will contribute significantly to SweetWater’s continuing success. Colleen served at Chair of the SweetWater Board over the past year.
Bob Scheifele, Treasurer - Bob has a background in both law and accounting. After receiving a Bachelor of Commerce, Honours from University of Guelph in 1995, he received a Bachelor of Laws from University of Alberta 1998 and was called to the Bar in Alberta in 2000 and in Ontario in 2001. He worked as a lawyer for over ten years. In recent years, he has focused on accounting. He joined Gaviller and Company (now Collins Barrow SGB LLP) in January 2012. In 2016, he obtained his CPA, CA designation.
Shawna Macivor, Secretary- Retired from a career teaching at Massey University in New Zealand and doing policy analysis for the Ontario government. Recently moved back to Owen Sound. Thrilled to find a classic and jazz music festival to rival the city's stellar Summerfolk festival. Happy to volunteer on the Board of SweetWater supporting such high calibre music and led by the effervescent and multi-talented Mark Fewer. Along with being a Board Director over the past year, Shawna was also a key member of our Fundraising and Promotions Committee.
Marion McDougall, Director-at-Large – A retired educator and accomplished violist, Marion has contributed significantly to SweetWater thanks to her background as a musician and passion for providing musical education for the next generation. In her role heading up the Education Committee, Marion has focused the committee’s attention on having musicians visit schools, provide Master Classes, and involve youth in innovative musical programming. She will help to spearhead SweetWater’s new Access Music programme over the coming year. Marion also organizes the Classical Jam event at the Festival.
Sydney Misener, Director-at-Large - Sydney has been a patron of the Festival since its inception. She has served on numerous not for profit Boards at both the local and provincial level. Currently she is Chair of the Board of the United way of Bruce and Grey, and works as a freelance consultant in the social services. Sydney has contributed in several important ways including coordinating accommodation for visiting performers, organizing receptions events, and hospitality for performers. Her experience in these areas has been invaluable year after year for SweetWater.
Lynda Montgomery, Director-at-Large – Lynda has been involved with many local arts and culture organizations over the years. This past year she volunteered on the SweetWater Fundraising Marketing Committee and assisted with Festival activities in 2016. She was one of the original SweetWater Board members (4 years) and was also a past board member and president of the Georgian Bay Symphony. She also helped to establish and run the Bluewater Youth Orchestra. Over the years, Lynda has served on several chiropractic boards in various capacities. She is currently on the Ontario Review Board for mental health.
Jackie Mersich, Director-at-Large – Jackie began her long interest in music while studying trumpet and piano while growing up Manitoba. Playing in community orchestras and ensembles was a major influence in developing a strong interest in the arts and music. In more recent years, she has continued her involvement with music by participating in the Georgian Bay Symphony, the Georgian Bay Brass quintet, and the Georgian Bay Concert Choir. This also led to her sitting on the boards of the Georgian Bay Symphony, Ontario Federation of Symphony Orchestras, the Georgian Bay Children's Choir, and the Georgian Bay Concert Choir.
Bruce Hutchinson, Director-at-Large - Bruce held an academic post in Civil Engineering at the University of Waterloo from 1962 until 1996 and received the honorific of Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Civil Engineering. He also served as a consultant for a variety of organizations such as Transport Canada, The Royal Commission on National Passenger Transportation, the Ontario Ministry of Transportation, the Toronto Transit Commission, and the World Bank. Bruce and his wife have lived on a rural property west of Markdale for the past 21 years. They are active supporters of SweetWater, the Leith Summer Music Festival, the Stratford Festival, and Canadian Stage. Previously, they actively supported the K-W Symphony Orchestra and Professional Associates program.
Jill Willington, Director-at-Large - Jill had a long career as a Certified Public Accountant working for several private and not-for-profit organizations. Along with her professional experience, she has sat on many not-for-profit boards including Music Alive and the Federation of Women Teachers' Association of Ontario. Jill came to Grey County at age 11 and has lived in Owen Sound, Thornbury and currently resides in Clarksburg. She is now retired from her accounting career but enjoys pursuing other interests including a great interest in music and playing cello.